Doctors told me to abort my daughter 14 times… I refused and now have a healthy baby girl – The Sun

A BRAVE mum who was told to abort her daughter 14 times has defied doctors' advice and now brought home a healthy baby girl.

When Kiera Meldrum, 20, from York, went into labour at 34 weeks, she was terrified of losing daughter Lillee-Rose.

Kiera says she was offered an abortion every week from her 21-week scan, because her unborn child was suffering a rare bowel disorder.

She was diagnosed with jejunal atresia, an abnormal narrowing of part of her bowel.

It had also caused with grade 3 severe ascites – the build up of fluid in the abdomen, which caused a catalogue of complications.

But Kiera, who suffered four miscarriages before conceiving Lillee-Rose, refused to abort her daughter.

Speaking exclusively to Fabulous Digital, Kiera said: "Doctors told me every week to terminate my pregnancy.

"Hearing that advice over and over again was horrific, but something told me Lillee-Rose would make it through.

"I refused to terminate Lillee-Rose every time they told me to.

"I'm so happy I listened to my heart instead of the doctors."

Kiera gave birth just half an hour after rushing to York Hospital on February 26, having gone into labour naturally.

The stay-at-home mum was barely able to hold her daughter before she was transferred to Leeds Hospital for surgery.

Lillee-Rose had multiple life-saving operations and spent 20 weeks in hospital, before Kiera was finally able to take her home.

Six months on, the tot is a happy and healthy baby girl. She has a delicate bowel, but doctors have told her mum they don't anticipate any problems in the future.

Kiera said: "When I went into labour six weeks early, I was terrified of losing her.

Doctors told me every week to terminate my pregnancy… but something told me Lillee-Rose would make it through

"I was waiting for what felt like forever for that first cry and, when I heard nothing, I just shut my eyes in fear, not wanting to see what had happened.

"Finally, this little scream erupted and I felt a huge wave of relief wash over me.

"They handed me Lillee-Rose and she was just the most beautiful baby I'd ever seen in my whole life. She was perfect.

"Watching them whisk her straight away from me and into surgery broke my heart.

"But I always had a feeling that she'd be OK. Seeing her grow up healthy and strong just goes to show a mother always knows best."

After suffering four miscarriages over a two-year period, Kiera was delighted when she found out she was pregnant again in July 2018.

Her 12-week scan at Leeds Hospital confirmed all was well, but eight weeks later doctors noticed the baby's stomach was filling with fluid.

Doctors realised the unborn child had grade 3 severe ascites to the bowel and Kiera was advised to terminate her pregnancy.

When I went into labour six weeks early, I was terrified of losing her

But she couldn't give up on her little miracle.

She said: "I felt sick when they told me she wasn't well. But I just knew my little girl was a fighter and she could make it.

"There was no way I was terminating my pregnancy – I'd waited so long to become a mum and I was determined to do all I could to protect my baby."


Ascites is a build-up of fluid between the two layers of the peritoneum, a membrane that lines the tummy.

Ascites can be caused by cancer and other medical conditions.

But it's extremely rare as a birth complication, affecting between one and three in every 10,000 cases.

It's extremely serious, even in adults.

Without treatment, most cases have a survival time of between 20 and 58 weeks.

Kiera went for a scan every week for the rest of her pregnancy.

And her heart was shattered further every time, as doctors continued to tell her to terminate.

At her 28-week scan, doctors revealed the baby's bowel had ruptured and told her to terminate again.

Realising amniotic fluid was being transferred into Kiera's stomach, doctors advised her to have it drained.

But she was too scared of endangering her baby's life and refused.

Kiera said: "My stomach swelled up enormously. It felt like I was carrying a giant painful water balloon against my tummy.

"Doctors said draining the fluid could hurt my baby and, after being told how poorly she already was, I knew I couldn't do anything risky.

"I was in constant pain but I had to do everything I could to protect my baby – or I'd never forgive myself."

There was no way I was terminating my pregnancy – I'd waited so long to become a mum and I was determined to do all I could to protect my baby

The fluid build-up blighted Kiera's pregnancy, leaving her in horrendous pain and unable to move properly.

Kiera was eventually born weighing a tiny 4lb 3oz and, after a few precious minutes with her mum, was whisked off to Leeds.

Doctors had to act fast to save her life and monitored Lillee-Rose for eight weeks inside an incubator.

Kiera said: "She looked so tiny inside the incubator, with all these wires and monitors surrounding her.

"I knew it was the best place for her but I just wanted to hold my baby girl.

"I'd been waiting for months to meet her and now I couldn't even hold her in my arms. It was devastating."

Lillee-Rose underwent surgery for a second time at six weeks old.

Only between one and three in every 10,000 babies are born with jejunal atresia with ascites.

Her condition is so rare doctors are writing research papers on Lillee-Rose – who is lactose intolerant – to help future cases.


Dr Kelly Cohen, Consultant in Fetal Medicine and Obstetrics & Clinical Director, Women's CSU at Leeds Teaching Hospitals Trust, said: "We are very happy to hear that Lillee-Rose is doing well and has recovered from her surgery.

“Lillee-Rose had a rare birth defect called jejunal atresia with ascites, which affects between 1-3 babies in every 10,000 born and requires complex specialist surgery to correct.

“Her mum Kiera was scanned four times in the Leeds Fetal Medicine Unit, and she was also scanned weekly in her local hospital.

“The scans allowed us to monitor the progress and any improvement in the baby’s condition.

“At Leeds our specialists look after thousands of poorly babies every year.

“And we support parents to make difficult decisions whenever a life-threatening problem is detected, as in this case.

“It is our responsibility to ensure all our patients are given accurate information about possible outcomes and the range of options available to them.

“The offer of termination could be an option in some cases.”

Lillie-Rose is now being monitored every three months, but she is growing stronger as she gets older.

Kiera is amazed every day by the strength of her daughter and doesn't waste a single moment with her little miracle.

She said: "She's been diagnosed with an intolerance to lactose, but other than that, she's growing up healthy and getting bigger and stronger every day.

"My baby girl never stopped fighting and finally having her home with me is a blessing. She's my little miracle."

We previously spoke to a mum who was told to have an abortion 10 times – only to give birth to a healthy baby girl.

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